Maternal deaths high among tribal communities in Wayanad: CAG

thiruvananthapuram, kerala, tribal, cag
Thiruvananthapuram, Jun 13: A report of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has pointed out high number of incidents of maternal deaths and poor health of children among tribal population in Kerala's Wayanad district, home to nearly 31 per cent of the state's tribal population.

The report said that during 2008-09 to 2012-13, there were 51 maternal deaths, of which 32 were tribal women in the age group of 19-35.

The upland district in north Kerala, home to 31.24 per cent of tribal population of the state, was lagging behind other districts in Human Development Index, including basic health indicators and literacy rate compared to the state average.

While there was an overall reduction in Infant Mortality Rate(IMR) in Kerala to seven per 1000 live births in 2013 from 12 in 2008, IMR of Wayanad increased to 9.67 from 7.72 in the period, the report which was released recently said. The IMR of tribal population was very high and stood at 28.97 in the district in 2008-09, it said.

Quoting a recent UNICEF-assisted survey by the District Administration among children of 0-72 months in four village panchayats, the report said the infant mortality was as high as 41.47 among tribal population.

The survey also noted that about 34.1 per cent of children in the age group of 1-2 years did not receive all the primary doses of immunisation by the end of the first year of their life. It also said health problems such as underweight,anaemia, stunted growuth and low birth rate were high among the tribal communities.

According to Indian Public Health Standards, the delivery services have to be provided in all Primary Health Centres. In Wayanad, there are 35 government hospitals, including 22 PHCs. However, only five of them-- the district hospital, two taluk hospitals in Sulthan Bathery and Vythiri, general hospital in Kalpetta and Community Health Centre (CHC) in Meenangadi--provided delivery services, the report said.

Due to lack of delivery services in government hospitals, 37,567 of the 72,795 deliveries reported during 2008-13 were in private hospitals. Of 3,180 cases of domicile deliveries in the state during 2010-13, 988 cases were from Wayanad, it said. The CAG report said adequate manpower and infrastructure as per Indian Public Health Standards were not available in CHCs and PHCs in the district. 


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